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Employer Assistance & Resource Network on Disability Inclusion (EARN): A service of the The Viscardi Center
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Employer Assistance & Resource Network on Disability Inclusion (EARN): A service of the The Viscardi Center    Search 
April 29th, 2015 by

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April 29, 2015

What’s New

DiversityInc Releases Annual List of Top Companies for Diversity and Disability
DiversityInc—an Employer TA Center partner—released its list of 2015 “Top 50 Companies for Diversity” last week at an event in New York City attracting more than 900 senior executives. Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corporation took the top spot for the second time. Also released were 13 lists for select specialty areas, including a “Top 10 Companies for People with Disabilities,” which was capped for the fourth year in a row by Ernst & Young.

Read more about the event and rankings.

EEOC Issues Proposed Rule Regarding Employee Wellness Programs
Last week, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission published a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking regarding how the Americans with Disabilities Act applies to wellness programs that are offered as part of employers’ group health plans. Employers and other members of the public are invited to provide comments on the proposed rule by June 19.

Learn more about the EEOC’s proposed rule, including how to submit comments.

Mental Health Month is Just Around the Corner
Mental Health Month starts in just a few days, and employers and other organizations across the country are encouraged to participate. Held annually in May, this public awareness campaign aims to increase understanding of and eliminate stigma associated with mental health disabilities. Mental Health America offers a range of resources to help in planning workplace and community-based events and observances.

Learn more about how to participate in Mental Health Month.

JAN Twitter Chat Addresses Personal Assistants as Accommodations
The Job Accommodation Network (JAN) recently hosted a Twitter chat on personal assistants as reasonable accommodations, spurring many questions from both employees and employers ranging from what constitutes a personal assistant to whose responsibility it is to provide one. For anyone who missed the event or wishes to learn more about the topic, JAN offers a wealth of information on its website.

Read JAN’s publication on Personal Assistance Services in the Workplace.


Mark Your Calendar

Stay at Work/Return to Work

May 12, 2:00 – 3:00 p.m. EST WEBCAST

This Job Accommodation Network (JAN) webcast will address Return-to-Work and Stay-at-Work programs, which help employees continue or resume working following the onset of a disability through job changes and/or accommodations. It will be moderated by the Office of Disability Employment Policy’s Susan Picerno, and the presenters will be JAN consultants Elisabeth Simpson and Lisa Mathess, who will discuss the benefits of Return-to-Work and Stay-at-Work programs and their role in broader disability management initiatives.

Register for Stay at Work/Return to Work.

Pregnancy and Related Issues in the Workplace

June 9, 2015, 2:00 – 3:00 p.m. EST WEBCAST

Some women may need work adjustments in order to continue working during pregnancy, but employers’ obligations to provide them under the Pregnancy Discrimination Act and Americans with Disabilities Act have never been completely clear. This Job Accommodation Network (JAN) webcast will address these issues, and feature presentations by JAN Lead Consultant Tracie DeFreitas and attorney Jeff Nowak, a nationally recognized leader on related topics.

Register for Pregnancy and Related Issues in the Workplace.

Employer Spotlight

Pepsico Logo


This case study uses the example of one high-performing PepsiCo computer programmer to highlight the critical role communication and mutual respect play in ensuring employees with disabilities can thrive on the job. To start, the individual came to his interview fully knowledgeable of the software PepsiCo used and shared how he would perform his job using assistive technology (AT). After he was offered and accepted the job, PepsiCo arranged to have the AT tools in place starting on day one.

Read the PepsiCo case study.

Spacer2 Spotlight

Federal Absence and Disability Management Policies

Federal Absence and Disability Management Policies

Employers incur significant direct and indirect costs as a result of employee absenteeism, which is linked to low levels of staff morale and productivity. Thus, it behooves them to implement effective absence and disability management policies. This policy brief draws upon research from both the public and private sectors to examine common causes of excessive absenteeism and effective strategies for reducing it.

Read Federal Absence and Disability Management Policies.

The Employer Assistance and Resource Network (EARN) is a resource for employers seeking to recruit, hire, retain and advance qualified employees with disabilities. It is a service of the National Employer Policy, Research and Technical Assistance Center for Employers on the Employment of People with Disabilities (Employer TA Center), which is funded by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Disability Employment Policy under a cooperative agreement with The Viscardi Center. For more information, visit


Preparation of this material was funded by the Office of Disability Employment Policy, U.S. Department of Labor, Grant No. [OD-26451-14-75-4-36]. This document does not necessarily reflect the views or policies of the Office of Disability Employment Policy, U.S. Department of Labor, nor does the mention of trade names, commercial products, or organizations imply endorsement by the U.S. Government.

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